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View Full Version : My test: 6-7k amp roundup.



TaylorFade
11-26-2013, 08:56 PM
For those who haven't seen it elsewhere... I tested a couple amps last week.

I'm not going to repost the whole spiel about how it went down, but the resistive part is on fixed resistance (like the AD-1 amp dyno) and the other is a traditional clamp at .25 nominal (except the Crown) on a pair of Tantric HDD15's.

Family photo. the B2 and big bish all the way to the right are just for funsies. They were tested, but won't be included in this one.

http://i848.photobucket.com/albums/ab45/taylorfade/Amps/DFB458AD-C498-4A87-A9BC-9CE52C623976-178-00000008DF593446_zpse724359c.jpg (http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taylorfade/media/Amps/DFB458AD-C498-4A87-A9BC-9CE52C623976-178-00000008DF593446_zpse724359c.jpg.html)

NS-1 next to the CT.

http://i848.photobucket.com/albums/ab45/taylorfade/testing/31155B6B-5D35-472C-AFA2-7EFCC8969CD8-2488-000001D63E002ADE_zps3c8dbebf.jpg (http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taylorfade/media/testing/31155B6B-5D35-472C-AFA2-7EFCC8969CD8-2488-000001D63E002ADE_zps3c8dbebf.jpg.html)

Results...

CT Sounds 7k - 7,000w resistive - 7,930w rising to .9 - 71% efficient - 158.6db

American Bass 750.1 - 6,200w resistive - 7,100w rising to .9 - 72% efficient - 158.2db.

Sundown NS-1 - 5,800w resistive - 6,550w rising to .9 - 72% efficient - .7db down from the CT.

DD M4a - 6,000w resistive - 6,490w rising to .9 - 71% efficient - 158.0db

JBL Crown 6000 - 5,200w @ 5 ohm resistive - 6,400w rising to 3 ohms - 62% efficient - 158.2db

Popcorn Sounds 6k - 5,100w resistive - 5,700w rising to .9 - 60% efficient - 157.1db. Dirty, dirty as ****.


Not surprisingly, the amp that made the most power was the loudest. What is surprising (to some) is the amp that's 4th out of 5 in terms of apparent power was tied for 2nd in score. There's something to be said for A/B topology there. Even though I think it's some sort of hybrid.

Dollar per watt/score... I'll have to begrudgingly give the nod to the Popcorn. Even though I don't know how much they are. Assuming they're $800 or so? That's 14 cents a watt. Which is 3 cents cheaper than the CT. But I'd trust the CT waaaaaaaaay more than a Popcorn. The other (3) come in at ~ 22-23 cents per watt. Still a bargain for the quality of amp you're getting, IMO.

My thoughts...

CT Sounds - solid performer. Made the same power at 10.5 dcv as it did ~ 14v. This is great news for battery guys. That puts it in DD territory as far as low voltage beastliness. It's also a big bish if you're into that kinda thing. The white is clean but makes scuffs, scratches, smudges stick out like a **** on a fish. The pots on this amp were the "cheapest" of the bunch. I don't care for the plastic Phillips head pots. It's not a deal breaker. Just an observation. bass knob/Voltmeter also earns bonus points from me. It has a clipping indicator on it too, but it's not of much use. It started flickering around 40acv when it made over double that clean. No surprise there since I've been telling y'all forever that those things are just a light show.

Side note on the CT: it's the only amp here with triple inputs. Ryan only had (2) spare leads so we tested it first with just duals. But we agreed to test all the amps the way they were designed. Fwiw... The 3rd input was worth .2 on the meter.

AB 750.1. I've got love for the VFL's. What I don't care for is AB's ratings of them. They've seemingly gone to "max" power ratings. The amps are solid enough. They don't need inflated rating to sell them. Do they? Bonus points for the AB being 18v stable. It would walk these others once you get past the 16v CT and 15.2v DD. But... That doesn't help the 12v guys. It's also a big *** amp physically. It dwarfs the M4a in size, but not so much in score. Still way up there on my recommend list even though I feel like it underperformed here. Most efficient of the bunch by what probably amounts to margin of error.

M4a... Oh how I love thee. Smallest amp in the bunch and perhaps a bit of an underdog in this one. It fell short of DD's 7k rating, but still made the most power per sq in of real estate. Low voltage monster. Bulletproof as they come. Doesn't like .25 much so it took a slower roll to get it there but it did fine. We tested the protection circuit pretty good finding the sweet spot on the roll. .35 is the lowest I'd recommend burping this one. Has the lowest operating voltage of all these amps. 15.2-15.3 or so is all you're likely to be able to run. Not a concern for 99% of people but its nice to have a little cushion in the voltage.

JBL Crown... This is one of those holy grail type amps. Its hyooooj. Entirely impractical. Not so efficient and 1,000% awesome. Do want. This test absolutely demolishes the efficiency myths floating around about this amp. It's really a gigantic, retardedly bad *** SQ amp. It's also a 2 channel so it was bridged here. It ALSO only has single inputs. And I'm now cursing the fact that we didn't test it with duals. Just might have caught that big white bish. This amp is just plain *** and the output test was just for funsies but it impressed me even though I've heard it before. This amp will be mine. Oh yes... It will be mine.

Popcorn Sounds... GFY.

Sunown NS-1 - Most expensive amp in the test. More optimized for high voltage operation so it was maybe at a disadvantage in this one. Still did well at 14v, but this one and the AB would really start stretching the others out with more voltage if that's your thing. This amp is basically an M4a that is operational to 19v. Which is awesome considering how much I like the M4a.

myjaja
11-26-2013, 09:01 PM
I wonder how the ns-1 v2 will compare to the v1?

jeffdachef
11-26-2013, 09:51 PM
thanks taylor! i can see CT becoming huge forum bon3rs after this lol.

neo_styles
11-26-2013, 09:56 PM
thanks taylor! i can see CT becoming huge forum bon3rs after this lol.

It wasn't already?

Personally, I'm happy with how well the JBL held up against the new kids on the block

hispls
11-26-2013, 10:11 PM
What's the big one on the right?

Were you running the Crown in 2 ohm or 4 ohm mode (according to their ratings 4 ohm mode makes more power). I've been told the the Crown amp is a class D variant and I must say mine is some of the best money I've spent in car audio as far as every day enjoyment and bad arse factor.

Also great post. Thank you for your effort and sharing.

CodyHendo
11-26-2013, 10:14 PM
well this just completely solidified my want for ct sounds amps.

andrew2944r
11-26-2013, 10:17 PM
What's the big one on the right?

Were you running the Crown in 2 ohm or 4 ohm mode (according to their ratings 4 ohm mode makes more power). I've been told the the Crown amp is a class D variant and I must say mine is some of the best money I've spent in car audio as far as every day enjoyment and bad arse factor.

Also great post. Thank you for your effort and sharing.

Big one on the right is the Ampere Audio 7500

TaylorFade
11-26-2013, 10:18 PM
JBL was the most fun. And my favorite. Bish is a beast!!

We tested the Crown at 5 ohms resistive because it was that or 1 ohm and it makes more power up top. But on the clamp, we tested 4 ohm nominal first. Bish made 3,200w rising to 12.5 ohms! Lmao. That's so bad ***. So, since we were getting 3x rise, we wired to 1 ohm nominal to get the 6.2k rising to 3 ohms.

Got voltage? Holy crap. This is unloaded.

http://i848.photobucket.com/albums/ab45/taylorfade/testing/2D197ECA-96CA-475E-BD27-267549B933CF-671-000000914C0297B3_zpsc5217acd.jpg (http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taylorfade/media/testing/2D197ECA-96CA-475E-BD27-267549B933CF-671-000000914C0297B3_zpsc5217acd.jpg.html)

hispls
11-26-2013, 10:29 PM
JBL was the most fun. And my favorite. Bish is a beast!!

We tested the Crown at 5 ohms resistive because it was that or 1 ohm and it makes more power up top. But on the clamp, we tested 4 ohm nominal first. Bish made 3,200w rising to 12.5 ohms! Lmao. That's so bad ***. So, since we were getting 3x rise, we wired to 1 ohm nominal to get the 6.2k rising to 3 ohms.

Got voltage? Holy crap. This is unloaded.

http://i848.photobucket.com/albums/ab45/taylorfade/testing/2D197ECA-96CA-475E-BD27-267549B933CF-671-000000914C0297B3_zpsc5217acd.jpg (http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taylorfade/media/testing/2D197ECA-96CA-475E-BD27-267549B933CF-671-000000914C0297B3_zpsc5217acd.jpg.html)

Indeed, it makes huge power into high impedance. I've mistakenly wired subs to 12 ohm nominal and wondered why I was down 2.5dB on the meter from my normal 3 ohm nominal number.

Also very interesting that high voltage > high current on the meter. It's a shame the thing is so **** big and over-complicated design.

*Edit* I also just came into some money, if that Crown is FS for a good price PM me.

Side Show
11-26-2013, 11:03 PM
awesome test and amps you have there bud, very interesting read, cheers

dragnix
11-26-2013, 11:10 PM
JBL Crown... This is one of those holy grail type amps. Its hyooooj. Entirely impractical. Not so efficient and 1,000% awesome. Do want. This test absolutely demolishes the efficiency myths floating around about this amp. It's really a gigantic, retardedly bad *** SQ amp. It's also a 2 channel so it was bridged here. It ALSO only has single inputs. And I'm now cursing the fact that we didn't test it with duals. Just might have caught that big white bish. This amp is just plain *** and the output test was just for funsies but it impressed me even though I've heard it before. This amp will be mine. Oh yes... It will be mine.



Indeed, it makes huge power into high impedance. I've mistakenly wired subs to 12 ohm nominal and wondered why I was down 2.5dB on the meter from my normal 3 ohm nominal number.

Also very interesting that high voltage > high current on the meter. It's a shame the thing is so **** big and over-complicated design.

*Edit* I also just came into some money, if that Crown is FS for a good price PM me.
I don't think that's happening bro

TaylorFade
11-26-2013, 11:23 PM
I don't think that's happening bro

The amp is a teammate's. I might be able to talk him into selling it to me since it'll stay "in the family", but even that will be a chore.

dragnix
11-27-2013, 12:51 AM
The amp is a teammate's. I might be able to talk him into selling it to me since it'll stay "in the family", but even that will be a chore.

Either way, hispls is not getting his hands on it

Canaan
11-27-2013, 12:51 AM
A friend of mine once told me, high voltage is better for a coil than high current.
He got his EE a few years ago, some of you might remember him from Team SPEAD down around Baton Rouge. He set a few USACi records.

Last I knew, he went by the name of...Matt Sibley.
;)

TaylorFade
11-27-2013, 12:58 AM
A friend of mine once told me, high voltage is better for a coil than high current.
He got his EE a few years ago, some of you might remember him from Team SPEAD down around Baton Rouge. He set a few USACi records.

Last I knew, he went by the name of...Matt Sibley.
;)

Pfft. Sibley.

Now we just need somebody to start making 5,000w class A/B amps for less than $1/watt.

This may also be why Brazilians are so f'n loud in burp cars. Higher voltage, less amperage compared to Koreans.

I've owned a little A/B powa myself. A/B amps are like... big and stuff.

http://i848.photobucket.com/albums/ab45/taylorfade/Amps/A83EE445-9EFE-478C-8F9B-A2CF41A9E6F6-904-00000171295FB2D8_zps61f4c2c2.jpg (http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taylorfade/media/Amps/A83EE445-9EFE-478C-8F9B-A2CF41A9E6F6-904-00000171295FB2D8_zps61f4c2c2.jpg.html)

Canaan
11-27-2013, 01:04 AM
Pfft. Sibley.

Now we just need somebody to start making 5,000w class A/B amps for less than $1/watt.

This may also be why Brazilians are so f'n loud in burp cars. Higher voltage, less amperage compared to Koreans.

I've owned a little A/B powa myself. A/B amps are like... big and stuff.


Why not a high voltage hybrid amp?

TaylorFade
11-27-2013, 01:17 AM
Why not a high voltage hybrid amp?

Damping factor, yo!

SounDrive
11-27-2013, 01:19 AM
Indeed, it makes huge power into high impedance. I've mistakenly wired subs to 12 ohm nominal and wondered why I was down 2.5dB on the meter from my normal 3 ohm nominal number.

Also very interesting that high voltage > high current on the meter. It's a shame the thing is so **** big and over-complicated design.

*Edit* I also just came into some money, if that Crown is FS for a good price PM me.

I know where one is that may be for sale in a few months...

hispls
11-27-2013, 06:59 PM
I know where one is that may be for sale in a few months...

I got money burning a hole in my pocket now. If nothing really sweet comes up I'll probably invest it in firearms.


I don't think that's happening bro



Either way, hispls is not getting his hands on it


Worth asking.

voughtrod
11-30-2013, 08:01 AM
Guns are always good :) I like guns. I like big massive speakers too.


Thanks for the review btw. Ill be needing power for some subs headed my way

HomeGrown
07-16-2014, 04:59 PM
Thanks for taking the time and posting the scores



Team NRG